south asia watch on trade, economics and environment

Ongoing Programmes

Initiating Dialogue on Post-Disaster Reconstruction

Nepal had never experienced a disaster as devastating as the April 2015 earthquake in the recent history despite the presence of active seismic core below its land surface. The 7.6 magnitude earthquake and the aftershocks that shook central Nepal killed about 9000 people and caused physical damages in billions of dollars. Despite initial hiccups, Nepal embarked upon reconstruction activities, mostly focused on the housing reconstruction. Although aid distribution is a major part of the reconstruction, it is not limited to distributing money to build houses and heritages. Ensuring that the funds are channelled to the needy and are well-utilised is an imperative along with guaranteeing a resilient reconstruction. Likewise, there is a need to carefully consider the impact of reconstruction on the living conditions and livelihoods of the people and how that is going to affect generations to come.

Against this background, SAWTEE initiated a dialogue through research and monthly forums on reconstruction and the impacts of earthquake on different sectors of the economy. This endeavour aims at streamlining issues that are touched upon by the disaster and reconstruction so that a broader and clearer picture on the reconstruction emerges. These initiatives are necessary to assist in preventing Nepal from ending up in the textbooks as a case of mismanagement of disaster recovery and reconstruction. 

SAWTEE identified nine thematic areas to be discussed during the monthly forums. For each topic, research was undertaken by a subject expert. The initial findings were discussed during the monthly forums amid the experts and stakeholders. Following the discussion, a policy brief based on the research and suggestions floated on the forum is prepared to be disseminated to relevant stakeholders, including the policy-makers.

First Monthly Forum: 

Nepal Post Disaster Reconstruction Experience: Current Status and Lessons Learnt  

Research conducted by: Dr. Jagadish Chandra Pokharel, Former Vice Chairman, National Planning Commission

Second Monthly Forum: 

Migration and Labour Dynamics in Post Disaster Nepal 

Research conducted by: Dr. Ganesh Gurung, Former Member, National Planning Commission 


Third Monthly Forum: 

Expenditure Analysis and Tracking of Post-Earthquake Reconstruction Programmes  

Research conducted by: Mr. Kishor Maharjan, Vice Campus Chief, Shankar Dev Campus, Tribhuvan University 


Fourth Monthly Forum: 

Building Safer Urban Spaces in Post-Disaster Nepal 

Research conducted by: Mr. Kishore Thapa, Former Secretary, Government of Nepal 


Fifth Monthly Forum: 

Post – Earthquake Conflict Resolutions 

Presentation by: Mr. Mohan Das Manandhar, Executive Director, Niti Foundation


Sixth Monthly Forum:

Unpacking and Operationalizing Disaster 

Research conducted by: Mr. Ajaya Dixit, Executive Director, Institute for Social and Environmental Transition (ISET)-Nepal .


Seventh Monthly Forum:

Reconstruction Experience: Lessons for Economic Management 

Research conducted by:  Dr. Yubaraj Khatiwada, Former Vice Chairman, National Planning Commission


Eighth Monthly Forum:

Assessing the Gender Implications in Post Disaster Reconstruction Period 

Research conducted by:  Ms Neelu Thapa, Programme Coordinator, SAWTEE and Ms. Dikshya Singh, Research Officer, SAWTEE


Nithth Monthly Forum:

Nepal-China trade after the 2015 earthquake 

Research conducted by:  Dr. Paras Kharel, Research Director, SAWTEE